The Red Sea Development Company appoints two new members to its global Advisory Board
World-renowned experts in marketing, branding and customer experience to inform The Red Sea Project’s next phase ahead of opening
Riyadh, (13 June 2021): The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC), the developer behind the world’s most ambitious regenerative tourism project, has appointed two industry experts to its global Advisory Board.
The new appointees, who have a combined experience of over 50 years in the hospitality and tourism sector, will play a pivotal role in directing The Red Sea Project towards welcoming its first guests at the end of 2022.
Frances-Anne Keeler (ex-Tourism Australia and VisitBritain) and Piers Schmidt (Founder of Luxury Branding) join the company’s existing international Advisory Board of eight world-leaders in business, investment, tourism, sustainability and conservation with immediate effect.
As we prepare to welcome our first visitors to the destination next year, our focus is turning towards how we share the treasures of The Red Sea Project. We are delighted to welcome the new Advisory Board members, whose experience will be instrumental in our preparation for launch
said John Pagano, CEO of TRSDC.
Frances-Anne Keeler has over 25 years of experience across hospitality and tourism, business and events and education and financial services. Having previously served as Tourism Australia’s Deputy Chief Executive Officer and VisitBritain’s Executive Director of Europe, she has led international strategy, marketing and operations across multiple markets. Frances-Anne has used her industry knowledge to launch her own tourism strategy consulting firm. She chairs the boards of various tourism initiatives, including Australian Tourism Data Warehouse, the national platform for digital tourism information in the region and Chocolateria San Churro, a unique Spanish chocolate café experience with over 50 stores in Australia.
Piers Schmidt brings over 25 years of experience in advising luxury brands. In 2002, Piers founded Luxury Branding, an advisory boutique for leaders seeking to create the world’s most hospitable brands. His experience includes the branding and roll-out of One&Only Resorts, extending the Giorgio Armani brand into hospitality and codifying five Trophy assets into the Dorchester Collection. Piers is also a visiting professor on the MBA program at Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne, a prestigious hospitality school in Switzerland.
The two advisors will join the roster of regional and international experts who currently advise the Board of Directors and Executive Management Team of TRSDC.
The Red Sea Project has already passed numerous significant milestones and work is on track to welcome the first guests when the international airport and the first hotels will open next year. All 16 hotels planned in Phase I will be opening by the end of 2023.
Upon completion in 2030, The Red Sea Project will comprise 50 hotels, offering up to 8,000 hotel rooms and around 1,300 residential properties across 22 islands and six inland sites. The destination will also include a luxury marina, entertainment and leisure facilities.
About The Red Sea Development Company
The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC - www.theredsea.sa) is a closed joint-stock company wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia. TRSDC was established to drive the development of The Red Sea Project, a luxury tourism destination that will set new standards in sustainable development and position Saudi Arabia on the global tourism map.
The project will be developed over 28,000 km2 of pristine lands and waters along Saudi Arabia’s west coast and includes a vast archipelago of more than 90 islands. The destination also features mountain canyons, dormant volcanoes, and ancient cultural and heritage sites. The destination will include hotels, residential properties, leisure, commercial and entertainment amenities, as well as supporting infrastructure that emphasizes renewable energy and water conservation and re-use.
Activity for the first phase of development, which focuses on enabling the infrastructure to support future work, is well underway. A marine infrastructure contract awarded in July 2019 includes the construction of a 3.3 km crossing to Shurayrah (the main hub) and development has begun at the Coastal Village, which will be home to around 14,000 people who will work at the destination.
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